Ian S.

Ian S.

10 Reviews
Jersey City, NJ

About Ian S.

Background Check: Last verified 09/19/2013
Ian passed a background check on 09/19/2013 that included the following:
  • National Criminal Record Check
  • County/State Criminal Record Check
  • Sex Offender Registry Search
  • SSN Trace & Verification
For more information, please click here.
Male Ages Taught: 5 to 99
Female Ages Taught: 5 to 99


A lifelong musician and songwriter, Ian S. has extensive experience teaching guitar and piano to students age 3 and up both as a private music instructor and as a teacher at the Institute of Music for Children in New Jersey. With 25 years experience in guitar and piano, Ian has studied and performed with several award-winning music artists, and has written and recorded over one hundred songs. He plays and teaches a variety of styles on both the guitar and the piano, from classical to jazz to rock. Ian is patient, friendly, and loves sharing the gift of music.

Ian was the guitarist in the Princeton University Jazz Ensemble for 3 seasons, was selected from a nationwide pool of musicians to perform at a special music event at the Kennedy Center in Washington DC, and was the recipient of the New Jersey Governor's Award in Arts Education for the category of Instrumental Music.

*** Lesson Details ***
I am very laid back and friendly, and I want you or your child to be as comfortable as possible during our lessons. You or your child will develop confidence and musical intelligence. I will make your lessons fun, enjoyable, and effective. Boredom is not an option! Music is fun... let's keep it that way.

The teaching methods I use will be custom-tailored to your individual needs, personality and specific musical goals. If it's guitar or piano you want to learn, I want to get you playing exactly what you want to be playing as soon as possible. That's what you're here for, and that's what I'm here for. I will make it happen. If it's songwriting that you want to learn, I will help you access that place inside of you that is dying to express itself creatively, and will teach you techniques to harness that energy and translate it successfully into musical expression.

You can expect to learn all the basics of music theory, proper playing techniques, improvisation and spontaneous musical expression, and I will help you develop your "ear" so you can figure out songs you like just by listening to them. This is all about you and your goals, and I want you to achieve them in a fun and engaging way.

*** Studio Equipment ***
Living room: Upright piano, guitars, amps, keyboard, percussion

*** Travel Equipment ***
Note: Although I do not have a car, I live just outside of Manhattan, and therefore have reliable transportation methods to travel to students who are in NYC. I would expect the student to provide whatever instrument he/she is learning.

*** Specialties ***
*Teachers classified as a Student Favorite have taught a minimum of 25 lessons and have received the highest feedback rating from students.I specialize in pop, rock, jazz, blues, folk, and classical music. I also teach improvisation and songwriting, and try to develop the student's ear for figuring out songs they like on their own.

Photos and Videos

Ian plays the last movement of Bach's Suite for Solo Cello #1

Languages Spoken

Mandarin Chinese Professional Proficiency

Student Reviews

Rated 5 out of 5 by 10 reviewers.
Rated 5 out of 5 by Excellent Teacher I have been taking lessons on various instruments the majority of my life. Ian is by far the best private teacher I have had. He is very concerned about technique and musicality and I am impressed with his knowledge and he patience March 6, 2014
Rated 5 out of 5 by Amazing! Ian is a great teacher! I am amazed at how patient and supportive he is. I have learned so much having him as my teacher. March 6, 2014
Rated 5 out of 5 by Wanna learn guitar? Talk to Ian After a change in life circumstances a little over a year ago, I decided to start learning to play the acoustic guitar. I'd tried as a kid but never seriously and this time, I decided to find a teacher. Luckily I found Ian, who is patient, understanding and incredibly encouraging, helping me to learn songs that I want to play. I'm happy to say that after a lot of practice, I'm doing great for my first year playing and a large part of the credit goes to Ian for being such a great teacher. If you are serious about learning the guitar (or piano), I think you's be hard pressed to do better than Ian. March 6, 2014
Rated 5 out of 5 by Guitar 2 years later and still going strong. Ian is the best. December 1, 2013
Rated 5 out of 5 by Very good Piano Teacher * Understands what the student already knows and plans accordingly. * I started off as a Learner , I was able to read the music notes by week-2. * I can play little rhymes to my kids all by myself in 4 weeks. * He is very patient and ensures that you learn the basics. I would recommend him any day. April 15, 2013
Rated 5 out of 5 by Amazing Teacher I'm almost afraid to write this because I need Ian to be available to teach my son! Ian is a wonderful piano teacher. He is very kind, patient, and my son responded very well to his teaching style. After his classes my son was actually excited to practice at home because he felt more confident about playing the piano. January 7, 2013
Rated 5 out of 5 by Guitar lesson I'm very happy to be taking lesson with Ian. He is very patient and very helpful. I will keep taking lesson with my instructor until I feel I have the handle of playing guitar. Mean while we have a lot to cover for the next months. I will recommend Ian to any body that wishes to learn how to play Guitar. A very good instructor and very friendly as well. April 19, 2012
Rated 5 out of 5 by Ian is an excellent teacher with great patience. I began taking acoustic guitar lessons with Ian as a true beginner with zero previous experience. He provides very good instruction at a comfortable pace along with relevant and useful practice exercises that have helped me reach the point where I'm able to play songs on my own. Ian is very encouranging and I would highly recommend him if you're planning to learn any of the subjects he teaches. September 15, 2011